What happens in the hot tub stays in the hot tub

I was at a party when I noticed that some friends were hopping into the hot tub in various states of undress.

Some wore bathing suits.

Others wore half a bathing suit.

And still others wore their birthday suit.

Well, there is nothing I like better than socializing au naturel, so I stripped and climbed (almost fell) inside.

I’m so dignified (cough).

I know you’d like to think that there was action.

And perhaps there was.

A little.

But it was all PG-13 rated.

I swear!

No one got past first base!

Sadly, I had to get out of the hot tub prematurely because my dear friend Tejas needed encouragement to consume water (not booze).

[How he managed to find CINNAMON SCHNAPPS when I told him to drink water for a while I WILL NEVER KNOW.]

That man is nothing if not resourceful.

So I have saved the memory of the hot tub activities firmly in my mind and will enjoy watching it play on repeat to my utter delight.

Wilderness Survival

A year ago I took a class called “Wilderness Survival.”

I learned that if you’re lost in the woods, you are MOST likely to die from exposure, first, dehydration second, and starvation third.

The majority of our time was focused on learning what we could do to keep our core body temperature at a stable level.

And so I learned to build a debris shelter.

Basically, you use a long piece of wood for a “spine” and smaller pieces of wood for “ribs” and you build yourself a little nest made of – you got it – debris!

You scoop up the leaf litter that’s lying on the ground and you pile it 24 – 48 inches thick on top of the frame you’ve built.

Despite the face that this looks like an above-ground coffin, this will keep you warm at night.

All I could think about as I was scooping leaf litter was “There better be no spiders in this.”

I am sure however, that if I was in the middle of a crisis, I would probably worry less about the spiders and more about my predicament.

The reason why I am telling you this is that I happened to mention to a few of my Tinder friends that I’ve taken a survival course and they think it’s wildly sexy.

You’d think that it would be my beer brewing classes that they’d find appealing.

But no, it’s the survival class.

Lately, the coffers have been filled with firemen, Air Force and Navy pilots, and Fire and Rescue members.

So it makes sense that they might value survival skills over my ability to brew beer.

The coolest guy I ever dated was an Australian wilderness expert.

For fun, he’d get dropped off in the Outback and have to find his way home with nothing but a powerbar and a liter of water.

Or something like that.

It sounds like I’m searching for my own Crocodile Dundee!

Party!

My birth father is the #1 child out of 6 kids. He has 2 brothers and three sisters.

It’s a BIG family.

You’d think, given the size of the family, and the fact that most of us live relatively local to each other, that we’d see each other a lot.

That is not the case.

So you can imagine how thrilled I am that we are having a party to celebrate my Aunt Xondra’s 50th birthday.

Whoopee!

Time to see everyone all in one place.

I’m bringing Tejas with me to meet my birth family.

He’s been my BFF for over two years now and has yet to meet the people who made me.

Hopefully it won’t be the least bit awkward that he is the same age as my birth parents.

He’s under strict instructions to not hit on ANYONE unless he clears it with me first.

The thing about this party is that I don’t see much of my birth father’s side of the family, except for my Uncle Donald and Aunt Stacey and their family.

They live closer to me and I get to see them from time to time.

They also spawned my sister-cousin Jennifer who takes me to 49er games and enthralls me with her lingerie, lack of inhibition, and positive self-esteem.

Believe you me, if that woman wrote a blog, you’d all be following it.

She also happens to be drop dead gorgeous with knockers BIGGER THAN MINE.

Someday, I will take her to Burning Man and we will knock that shit OUT OF THE PARK!

Oh and GO NINERS!

Burned!

My sister-cousin Jennifer is a HUGE 49er fan.

Their biggest fan, I think.

A true 49er faithful.

This past weekend she took me to their open practice at Levi’s Stadium.

And that’s when IT happened.

I wore a pair of jeans that had a TINY hole in the inner thigh.

Can you see where this is going?

Well, in the course of walking half a mile from the parking lot to our seats in the stadium, I managed to rip that hole WIDE OPEN.

It wasn’t visible to the general public, so at first I wasn’t worried about it at all.

But that changed.

You see the jeans material from my other leg RUBBED on the bare inner thigh of my exposed leg, giving me a friction burn.

Oh the pain of having no inner thigh gap.

But I digress.

So, we walked to and from the stadium and all around the stadium and I literally ripped skin off my inner thigh with EVERY STEP.

I was in a great deal of pain.

When I got home I RIPPED my jeans off of me and threw them on a ball on the floor.

Ever since then I’ve been coating my thigh burn with gun oil lube (to minimize friction) and Desitin (yes, butt paste for babies).

It still fucking hurts!

The worst part is that I had a flirtation that night and I was off my game on account of ALL THE LIQUID WEEPING OUT OF MY FRICTION BURN.

Yeah, it was pretty gross.

I did not feel sexy AT ALL.

On the bright side, I got to see our 49er boys practice football, AND I got to hang out with Jennifer, who I hadn’t seen in MONTHS!

Waste of time

Ecstatic Singles can be summed up in one word. . .

O L D !

Yes folks, I did indeed attend the Ecstatic Singles event with Bagelfather and we both agreed we were too young for that crowd.

I went in, as usual, kind of making fun of the whole experience – eye gazing, face stroking, etc.

But in the end, I enjoyed it all – except when the scary poly guy made a beeline to me to “connect.”

I practically tripped over myself getting to Bagelfather, my safety net.

And that’s when I realized it.

I’d rather stick with someone familiar and comfortable than stretch myself and meet someone new.

It scares me.

I’m still shy when it comes to that.

I know, I know.

You’re wondering how a woman who can stick her crotch in a stranger’s face in a hot tub could POSSIBLY be shy, but it’s true.

When there’s something on the line, I get awfully shy.

So the Ecstatic Singles get together wasn’t ENTIRELY a waste of time.

But it was pretty damn close.

Mom to the rescue

So there I am, relaxing on Waikiki Beach, getting my sun on when all of a sudden my sister hollers for me.

“MICHELLE!”

I turn to look at her.

She’s reclining in the shade of a banyan tree, avoiding the sun, which is exactly what I SHOULD be doing but AM NOT.

“WHAT?” I yell back.

She points to the banyan tree.

Standing in the banyan tree, about 15 feet up in the air, is my son Duncan.

He’s gone and gotten himself STUCK UP A TREE IN HAWAII.

I snickered.

Time to rescue my almost-18-year-old son who thinks he’s so grown up.

This is not the first time I’ve saved his butt.

There was that time he went snorkeling among speedboats in Tahoe.

And pretty much his ENTIRE childhood I spent keeping him on a leash because he liked to walk into traffic.

So this was nothing new to me.

“Please don’t break anything,” I said to him when I got close.

We walked over to the side of the tree he had climbed up and he proceeded to jump down and. . .well, see for yourself.

Just so you know, no matter how grown up they are, they still need a mother.

When swimming with dolphins kinda sucks

Somehow I got it in my head that it would be fun to swim with dolphins.

A lot of fun.

So I plopped down $250 per person for the privilege to do so at O’ahu’s famed Sea Life Park.

Needless to say, I was inundated with comments about animal abuse.

And no, I have not seen The Cove.

It pretty much robbed me of all my joy for the activity so when I couldn’t get my nose piercing out (the park requires all piercings be removed), I wasn’t all that disappointed that I couldn’t do it.

Best to let my boys, who had been shielded from conversations about The Cove, enjoy the activity.

And enjoy it they did!

They swam, hugged, kissed, and rode the dolphins and had a great time.

And I truly enjoyed watching them.

Which was nice considering all the guilt I experienced for doing it in the first place.

So let it be known, if you decide to swim with dolphins in a park, you’re likely to get beaten down with stories about dolphin abuse so DON’T TELL ANYONE WHAT YOU’RE DOING OR ELSE!!!

Watching my boys swim with dolphins was the best disappointment of my whole trip to Hawaii.

When O’ahu starts to look like Oakland

I suppose our rental wasn’t in the most elegant area of O’ahu.

We were located in Ewa Beach, just on the other side of Pearl Harbor.

10 minutes from Honolulu as the crow flies, but 45 minutes by car (since you have to drive around Pearl Harbor).

The house was neat and well apportioned but the neighborhood left a lot to be desired – dilapidated houses and stripped vehicles.

I’m not kidding.

There were ROWS on ROWS of stripped cars up on cinder blocks.

Driving through the jungle of freeways in Honolulu, my oldest son couldn’t help but remark, “I feel like I’m in Oakland, only hotter.”

To add to the ambiance of our neighborhood, every day at 8 am, gunfire would erupt.

My sister thought it was someone who was bad with a nail gun.

I knew better.

I did a quick google search and found the Pu’uloa Shooting Range in Ewa Beach, a mere 1.5 miles from our rental.

Ewa Beach, however, was beautiful, if a little rough.

My sister got tossed around the first day we went out.

But the boys had a blast.

Allergic to Hawaii

“Wake up!  You need to take your son to urgent care!”

That’s what I woke up to my first day in Hawaii.

“It looks like he has pink eye!”

My sister is a nurse, and when she declares something health-related, I listen.

But where is there Urgent Care on the island of O’ahu?

I quickly do a search on my phone, make a call, and load up Gavin in my rental car for inspection at Urgent Care.

I look at myself in the rear view mirror and discover something surprising. . .

My eye is swollen too!

A lot!

Aren’t we a pair.

So we go to Urgent Care and wait for it to open, busying ourselves with iced coffee we bought at a nearby coffee stand.

Then Gavin points it out.

Closed on Sundays.

And (of course) it’s Sunday.

Gah!

So I take a GOOD LONG LOOK AT GAVIN’S EYEBALL.

The lid is red, but the eyeball is nice and normal.

Probably NOT pink eye.

“What do you say we give it a day and see what happens?” I ask him.

He agrees, but will my sister.

Luckily Lisa agreed too, but asked for us both to pick up and take some Benadryl.

So we did.

And wouldn’t you know it. . . like magic, our swollen eyes took a chill pill and started to relax and look normal.

I believe it was my birthfather who upon seeing our swollen eye picture on Facebook coined the phrase, “YOU’RE ALLERGIC TO HAWAII!”

And indeed, it appeared that we were.

What do oysters and Burning Man have in common?

Today, Shutterfly decided to email me and remind me to look at my pictures from this week 11 years ago.

Wow!  What a blast from the past!

Graduation photos from Stanford.

I decided to scroll through all the photos I uploaded to Shutterfly and I came across some fun ones.

The first time I tried raw oysters.

I remember this trip.  I rented a luxury house in Tahoe during the winter and invited my sister and my friends and this guy I just started dating to join me.

The house had a hot tub on the outdoor deck AND a fireplace in the master bedroom and master bathroom!

Here I am sitting in the hot tub (please ignore the clove cigarette and note the snow on the patio railing).  It was COLD out!

I drove back to the Bay Area with the guy I just started dating.  We’ll call him “Tom.”

Tom stopped at his favorite restaurant in Truckee for oysters on the half shell – something I’d never had before.

Here you can see me eyeballing the oysters, working up the guts to eat one (let’s face it, they look kinda slimy and yucky):

Then I ate one!

It’s funny, many of the men I’ve dated have taught me something new.

Tom taught me to like oysters.

Ironically, Tom was a Burner.

A long time burner.

Too bad I waited 10 more years to discover Burning Man on my own!

 

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